Eighth Montane Grand Traverse Mountain Run and Mountain Bike events see exciting finish

The Montane Grand Traverse Mountain Run and Mountain Bike races have seen Keegan Oldani and Logan Greydanus claim victory, as the events celebrated successful eighth editions.

The Mountain Run event saw Oldani claim victory with a time of 6 hours 14 minutes, over 3 minutes ahead of Zachary Hauer in second place. Brook Handler took first place in the female event with a time of 7 hours 7 minutes, just under 3 minutes ahead of runner-up Mickey Davis. The race is a point-to-point ultra-marathon from Crested Butte to Aspen, Colorado, following the route of the Grand Traverse Backcountry Ski race. In total, runners travel 40 miles across the Elk Mountains with over 6,000 ft of elevation gain.

Meanwhile, the Mountain Bike event was won by Logan Greydanus who recorded a time of 4 hours 18 minutes, adding to his current Grand Traverse Ski crown, with Brian Smith five minutes behind in second place. The women’s event witnessed a new course record, with Jennifer Smith, wife of men’s runner-up Brian, delivering a trailblazing performance, crossing the line in just over 5 hours, with Caroline Tory three minutes behind. The race follows a similar route to the mountain run, being a point-to-point from Aspen to Crested Butte, Colorado. In total, bikers travel 41.5 miles across the Elk Mountains with over 7,800 ft of elevation gain. The course starts with a 3,000 ft ascent up Aspen Mountain before continuing deep into the Elk Mountains.

In 2015, The Grand Traverse expanded from the original ski race of the same name, to include the mountain run and mountain biking races. The Grand Traverse ski event typically takes place in the first quarter of the year, with the mountain run and mountain bike events taking place consecutively later in the year. The three events now form a tri-race series, creating ‘The Grand Traverse Triple Crown’, which sees athletes take on a series of point-to-point endurance challenges from Crested Butte to Aspen, Colorado.

The tri-race can be completed as individual events or as part of the wider Triple Crown series, and is positioned as Colorado’s preeminent multi-sport, multi-season endurance challenge.

Speaking on the race, #TeamMontane athlete, Jessica Yeaton, who claimed bronze in the women’s mountain bike event, commented: “After taking part in the Grand Traverse Mountain Bike race last year I felt like I was more prepared this year in terms of pacing myself and I knew the course better, but honestly it felt harder this year! The highlight was probably coming over the pass, with the lowlight being the first two hours, which were really hard. Looking ahead, my goal is to remain uninjured, compete in all three Grand Traverse events, and win the Triple Crown!”

Montane’s Marketing Executive, International Lead, Charlotte Guinan, said: “Each year we see the Montane Grand Traverse series grow bigger and bigger, with the mountain run and mountain bike events now forming a crucial part of the Montane race roster. This is the second consecutive year that Montane has sponsored the races and it is a pleasure to continue the partnership with The Grand Traverse, as it further positions itself within the endurance race calendar.”

This year saw the eighth Grand Traverse Mountain Run and Mountain Bike races and comes as the event strengthens its relationship with Montane, with the outdoor brand becoming headline sponsor of The Grand Traverse last year.

More information on the Montane Grand Traverse can be found over on the Montane site: https://montane.com/pages/grand-traverse.

Header image: Keegan Oldani competing in the Grand Traverse Mountain Run. Credit: Xavi Fane

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